Sheldon, Iowa — Veterans Day is Wednesday, a time to honor all the heroes who have worn the uniform of the United States Military and risked life and limb to defend our nation. World War II veterans are often referred to as “The Greatest Generation”, and one member of that generation credits something he saw, when visiting relatives in Sheldon, with the creation of the Avenue of Flags in his hometown of Clifton, New Jersey.
Walter Pruiksma was a member of the 783rd Military Police who saw action on D-Day and after. He tells us about his part in the invasion of
He says that his MP unit wasn’t like most military units.
Pruiksma tells about an interaction he had with an officer in the days after D-Day.
He said that one of the best memories from his military service is helping to establish the “Red Ball Highway”, a route through France that was set up to expedite the shipment of supplies to the troops on the front.
Many years later, while Pruiksma and his wife, Claire, were visiting their son and his family in Sheldon, he says he saw a beautiful sight, the Sheldon Avenue of Flags, an idea he took back with him to New Jersey.
Walter and Claire now live in a retirement community near the Jersey Shore.
If you’d like to read more about Pruiksma’s service in WWII, click here for an article from Military Police magazine.